Reviews of Teen Books

The Glittering Court
Mead, Richelle
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

This is the best book if you like multiple things in books. If you like fashion, adventure, romance, mystery, and royalty, then you'll love this novel that embraces the true nature of finding ones own path and defying the odds of those who doubt you are capable of things that you can already achieve. No matter what this book has a pure essence of perfection.

Reviewer's Name: Skyla N.
Genres:
Zen and the Art of Happiness
Prentiss, Chris
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

This non-fiction book is a great guide full of life improvement tips.
In this book, Chris Prentiss guides you through different strategies on how to be the best you, how to be the happiest you, and so on. The author teaches you different ways to be happy based on many Chinese philosophies and personal experience. What I liked about this book, was how simple it was. The methods presented by the author can be done by anybody and doesn’t require anything else, yet, he still shows how effective his methods are through telling stories about successful friends of his who listened to his advice.
Reviewer Grade: 7

Reviewer's Name: Kyle Y
The Last Wolf
Krasznahorkai, László
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

This bundle of stories is an interesting read. It contains three stories about a writer facing an identity crisis, a hunter gone mad, and a final story about the impact of the hunter’s actions. The way this story is written can be often confusing and difficult to understand for casual readers. I personally didn't like this book, due to the bland, depressing, atmosphere of the setting, and the complexity of the sentences. Often times, it is difficult to tell when the narrator is talking or when he is thinking.
Regardless, I still believe it is a fine read for readers with an advanced vocabulary. Reviewer Grade: 7

Reviewer's Name: Kyle Y
Awards:
The Cozy Life
Edberg, Pia
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

This guide provides an interesting approach to improving your life at home with a danish concept called hygge. In this book, different and interesting danish methods are presented, including how to make the most of your time with loved ones, what to avoid when participating in hygge, how to make your house a more relaxing atmosphere. Towards the end, there is a cookbook sharing many of the author’s favorite danish dishes. I found this book very helpful at giving ideas on ways to make your living space more relaxed and inviting, using things like lighting, plants, and cleanliness. In conclusion, I think this would be a nice book for anyone looking for ideas to throw a family reunion or looking to be a little more relaxed.
Reviewer Grade: 7

Reviewer's Name: Kyle Y
Monster
Myers, Walter Dean
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

This book is an interesting and suspenseful novel. It is filled to the brim with moments that will have readers on the edge of their seat. Monster also is written in a unique format, in the form of a movie script written my the protagonist Steve Harmon, who is awaiting trial for a crime he didn’t commit. This story is written with intense figurative language that paints a terrifying image depicting the horrors of prison. I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a great suspenseful read. Reviewer Grade: 7

Reviewer's Name: Kyle Y
The Outcasts
Flanagan, John
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

The Outcasts, is a book written by John Flanagan. I read it and enjoyed it very much. The Outcasts is the first book in the Brotherband Chronicles and begins in a place called Skandia. At the beginning of the book, Hal is not shown much respect. But as his leadership shows more and more, people learn to look up to him. When Hal turns 16, he and his friends go to Brotherband, a place to train to become a man of Skandia. The first two groups of ten are chosen, and Hal and the seven other outcasts are forced to join a group together. From then on, Hal starts to show his true colors to the reader and the other characters in the book.

I would rate this book four out of five because the book was a little slow in the beginning. On the other side, it was an awesome book with a great plot line. I would recommend this book to people who like Percy Jackson.

Reviewer's Name: Hayden S
Awards:
Amy and Roger's Epic Detour
Matson, Morgan
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Amy and Roger's Epic Detour, written by Morgan Matson, begins with communicating the past of the main character, whose name is Amy Curry. Amy is a girl whose passion is drama. She often played the main role in her school's musicals. This was before something very tragic took place in her life; something she keeps blaming herself for. The past year for Amy has been pretty awful. Her mother decided on a whim to move to Connecticut, forcing Amy to somehow get their car from their home, California, all the way across the country. The biggest problem is that Amy has been terrified to be behind the wheel since the fatal car accident she got in which killed her father.
Also, her twin brother has been a mess since their father's death. He was stoned regularly and went out late to friend's parties. That was before their mother decided, also on a whim, to send him to rehab in North Carolina. Now Amy is forced to be alone in her home in California which is seeming less and less like home as strangers come in with the realtor checking out the house.
Next, Amy's roadtrip gets started, but with an unexpected visitor named Roger, and the tables turn. I think this book is a beautiful display of picking one's life up after tragedy, and rediscovering who you are once dreadful obstacles get in your way. The characters are very round and developed and the book is impossible to put down! I recommend this book to anyone who has recently gone through something traumatic or anyone who is into fresh starts and adventures.

Reviewer's Name: Elizabeth P
The Iron Trial
Black, Holly
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

We all believe what we are conditioned to believe. For Callum Hunt that means believing magic is evil and corrupt. When his invitation to the Iron Trial arrives, he vows to please his dad and fail the trial. Instead his plan backfires royally and he is chosen by the best master in the whole magisterium. Against his dads best interests, Call attends the magisterium and discovers maybe magic is not as bad as he thought. That is until disaster strikes the Magesterium.

Any fan of fantasy or adventure will get lost in the world of the Magesterium. The book is full of friendship, trials, and fun twists. In The Iron trial you never know what awaits you around the next corner.

Reviewer's Name: Lauren G.
Genres:
Spin the Dawn Cover
Lim, Elizabeth
1 star = Yuck!
Review:

I picked up this book as it was being sold as “Project Runway meets Mulan” which sounded really intriguing, especially to this reader who loves both Project Runway and Mulan. And that description really does fit the first third of the book or so – our main character, Maia, poses as a boy to take her father’s place in a royal tailor competition. However, the potential of this part of the book is really under realized. There was a lot of room for plots within plots and court intrigue, but the whole thing is pretty quickly abandoned so that Maia could go on a quest for three objects with a cute boy who is very much off limits. If you are thinking to yourself, “isn’t that the plotline of like, half of all YA fantasies” then you, dear reader, are correct. With that said, though, I think many teens, especially those new to the genre, will really enjoy it. For me, an interesting and unique premise quickly gave way to a fairly pat YA fantasy. 1 star – I didn’t like it.


Thanks to Netgalley and Random House Children's Knopf Books for Young Readers for the eARC which I received in exchange for an unbiased review. Spin the Dawn is available now.

Reviewer's Name: Britt
The Goose Girl
Hale, Shannon
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

This book was the essence of the life and struggles that can be overcome with the strength that women can hold when they believe in themselves. This book has given me a moral that treats the spirit in telling us that we can do anything if we strive for and work hard to achieve it. Great book, and great writing style. Loved every happy, and bittersweet moments that were inhabiting this story.

Reviewer's Name: Skyla N.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Rowling, J.K.
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is a fun and entertaining book to read. Harry is at Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry with a new defense against the arts teacher, Alastor Moody. Finding out that Hogwarts is hosting the triwizard tournament everyone is excited. Having to be a certain age to compete in the tournament Harry is not aloud to participate.Two other schools come to compete in the games. One person from each school will contend in the games. When the night when students names get chosen out of the goblet of fire it spits out three different names and then Harry Potter. Harry is shocked. After Dumbledore agreed that Harry could play, they begin the triwizard tournament. the first challenge is for each person to take a golden egg from a dragon. the second task was to figure out a way to breathe under water and save someone. The third and most difficult task was to go through a maze and reach the triwizard cup first. Harry and Cedric the other Gryffindor contestant decide to touch the triwizard cup at the same time. The cup was bewitched and brought Harry and Cedric to a graveyard. And Voldemort comes back.

Reviewer's Name: Grace B.
Genres:
The Fault in Our Stars
Green, John
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Hazel Lancaster is battling cancer and has been sense she was 13. Now she is 16 and has had more than one near death experience. This book is an amazing book that could make you smile and cry at the same time. I would definitely recommended this book to people who have read 100 days by Nichole McInnes. It is a romantic tale of Hazel Lancaster and Augustus Waters trying to find answers to there favorite book while battling cancer. I would recommend the book for tweens, teens, and adults.

Reviewer's Name: Natalie M.
Paper Towns
Green, John
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Have you ever had someone in your life just leave or disappear? Quentin was best friends with Margo Roth Speilleman. One day when they we around seven years old they found a dead body laying against a tree. Years later they are seniors in high school and are not as good as friends anymore. Graduation is nearing and people are turning out reckless. One night Margo convinces Quentin to go help prank her cheating boyfriend and her backstabbing best friend who her boyfriend was cheating on her with. After that night Margo suddenly goes missing and Quentin ends up falling in love with her. Soon he finds that Margo left clues for him to crack and hopefully find her! This book will have you wrapped up in romance, mystery, comedey, and adventure.

Reviewer's Name: Lilyana B.
Gone
Grant, Michael
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

Gone, by Michael Grant is a fast paced dystopian sci-fi story about a small town in California by the name of Perdido Beach . The plot quickly pulls you in, leaving you emotionally invested in the characters. Personally, the second I was finished, I was onto the next book! The main character is a young boy named Sam Temple. After all of the people aged 15+ vanish, the remaining teens and children look up to him as their leader, even though he constantly tries to deny the huge responsibility. After a gang of bullies start to take over the town and kill and mutilate the people who won't bow down to them, he takes a stand to protect the rest of the innocents. Gone is the first in a series of five books. I would recommend this book, and by extension series, to anyone that enjoys superpowers, violence, and heartbreaking sacrifices.

Reviewer's Name: Emily G.
Wonder
Palacio, R. J.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Have you ever felt out of place? Like all you want is to fit in with the crowd, but it seems impossible? If so, you'd get along well with August Pullman. Ten-year-old August (Auggie) Pulllman is about to go into fifth grade at Beecher Prep, ready to face the world with his Padawan braid and astronaut helmet. But there are two things that get in the way: 1. He's been home-schooled all his life. 2. Auggie has Treacher Collins Syndrome, (TCS) a rare condition that occurs in one in fifty-thousand births. Because of his TCS, Auggie has downward-slanting eyes, a small jaw and chin, and the development of his facial bones and tissues are altered, causing him to have had twenty-seven surgeries -- and also causing some kids in his school to be scarred with night terrors. Everyday, Auggie is constantly challenged with overcoming whispers, side-glances, and even public humiliation from his peers that could get him killed one day. Auggie's world isn't all that bad though: he has two loving parents, a dog named Daisy, his older sister Olivia (Via), Via's friends Miranda and Justin, and his two new best friends, Summer and Jack, all of which are willing to do anything for Auggie, embarking on every incredible adventure he has so he doesn't have to face life alone.
Wonder is a magnificent book, filled with the challenges that every child and adult alike have to go through, whether or not they have a facial deformity. It is incredibly touching, and finds ways to connect with the reader and captivate its audience so much so that you won't be able to put the book down once you pick it up! Although many people would be disturbed by the imagery used to describe characters like Auggie Pullman, R.J. Palacio is able to create such a lovable and relate-able character that you just can't help but throw appearances aside and route for Auggie throughout the novel. You'll really wish that you could give him a hug the more you read the book, especially with the multiple POVs R.J. Palacio writes with, allowing you to observe Auggie's wonder of a story from every possible angle.

Reviewer's Name: Aimee W.
The Traitor's Game
Nielsen, Jennifer A.
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

The Traitors Game" about a girl named Kestra and a guy named Simon. Throughout the story Kestra and Simon argue and disagree but eventually come together to help defeat Lord Endrick along with a group of rebels named the Coracks and a tribe called the Halderians. I liked how the author was able to put so much description into small moments in the book but at the same time I also felt that there wasn't enough description in parts which I didn't enjoy as much. I chose to read the book because my father suggested it and I really enjoyed the read. I think that anyone from around 12 to 18 years of age would enjoy this book.

Reviewer's Name: Drew I.
Genres:
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Rowling, J. K.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

It is the second book in J.K Rowling's fantastic book series Harry Potter. 12 year old Harry has just come back from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to spend a dreadful summer at Number 4 Privit Drive. Little does he know his summer is about to get worse. Uncle Vernon is expecting to get one of the best deals of his life during a visit from the Masons. Unfortunately it doesn't go as planned when a house elf shows up in Harrys bedroom with an ominous message. The elf proceeds to try to get Harry expelled from Hogwarts by dropping a pudding on Mrs. Masons head. Uncle Vernon puts bars on Harrys window to stop him form getting out. Harry is in despair when the Ron (his best friend), Fred, and George(Ron's twin brothers) Weasley save him from the clutches of his aunt an uncle and he spend the restof the summer with them.

Harry is back at Hogwarts after an eventful journey. He's ready to start a new peaceful year at Hogwarts. That doesn't go to plan when he starts hearing a mysterious voice in the school corridors. Harry, Ron, and Hermione partake on a amazing and thrilling journey to uncover who is petrifying the students.
This book is absolutely amazing and is worth reading. It has magic, mystery, and loads of adventure.

Reviewer's Name: Katie
Genres:
The Hunger Games
Collins, Suzanne
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Katniss, a teen girl who's dad died in a mining accident, left her to fend or her mother and little sister Primrose. She hunts and trades for her family with her friend Gale she met soon after the mining accident happened. The annual "Reaping" was a turn of events in the story and essentially what it is, is a night once a year where one girl and one boy aging from 12-18 from every 12 districts are chosen by chance to participate in "The Hunger Games." The Hunger Games is where all 24 children are forced to fight to the death in an arena and there is only one winner.

Reviewer's Name: Kaylee W.
To Kill a Mockingbird
Lee, Harper
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, is a fantastic novel that examines the racism present in the South during the Great Depression. The book includes several remarkable instances of justice being served to the widespread prejudice present, which captures the reader. All of the character are well developed and serve well in their roles, especially the main protagonist. The entire setting is also intriguing and forms a solid foundation for the plot. Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone as it is a fascinating tale about Southern life.

Reviewer's Name: Steven L
The Once and Future King
White, T.H.
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

The Once and Future King, by T. H. White, is a great fantasy classic that is a retelling of the saga of King Arthur. The novel is stuffed with a mix of wonderful emotions that blend together to make a very unique fantasy story. The characters are all developed very well, especially the protagonist, and the plot fits them very well. The book has some very sorrowful scenes, but does a fantastic job of spacing them out with its humor. The only downside to the book is that it is for high-level readers.

If the story was put into a bit simpler language, it would relate to more people and reduce the amount of strain placed on the readers' mind while trying to interpret it. Overall, The Once and Future King is a great fantasy novel, but its use of complicated language takes away from the world it creates.

Reviewer's Name: Steven L

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